Green tea possesses significant anticataract potential. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Green tea (Camellia sinensis) protects against selenite-induced oxidative stress in experimental cataractogenesis.
Ophthalmic Res. 2002 Jul-Aug;34(4):258-63. PMID: 12297700
Cataract is the leading cause of blindness worldwide. It is a multifactorial disease primarily associated with oxidative stress produced by free radicals. The protection offered by various antioxidants in cataract development is well established. Polyphenolic compounds present in green tea (Camellia sinensis) are reported to possess antioxidant property in various pathological conditions. The present study was undertaken to evaluate the anticataract potential of green tea leaf (GTL) extract in the development of lens opacification. Enucleated rat lenses were randomly divided into normal, control and treated groups and incubated for 24 h at 37 degrees C. Oxidative stress was induced by sodium selenite in the culture medium of the two groups (except the normal group). The medium of the treated group was additionally supplemented with GTL extract. After incubation, lenses were subjected to glutathione and malondialdehyde estimation. Enzyme activity of superoxide dismutase, catalase and glutathione peroxidase was also measured in different sets of the experiment. In vivo cataract was induced in 9-day-old rat pups of both control and treated groups by a single subcutaneous injection of sodium selenite. The treated pups were injected GTL extract intraperitoneally prior to selenite challenge and continued for 2 consecutive days thereafter. Cataract incidence was evaluated on 16th postnatal day by slit lamp examination. There was positive modulation of biochemical parameters in the organ culture study. Green tea was also found to reduce the incidence of selenite cataract in vivo. The results suggest that green tea possesses significant anticataract potential and acts primarily by preserving the antioxidant defense system. Copyright 2002 S. Karger AG, Base